2008-09Regular SeasonRound 1
October 22, 2008 CET: 20:45
Local time: 20:45 PALACIO DE LOS DEPORTES J.M. MARTIN CARPENA
Boniface Ndong - UnicajaUnicaja had a strong start for the 2008-09 Euroleague season by beating Le Mans 84-79 in Malaga, Spain in Group A on Wednesday night. Unicaja was the first team to register a win in Group A and visits Olympiacos next week. Meanwhile, Le Mans hosts Cibona in Game 2. Boniface Ndong led the winners with 14 points. Marcus Haislip added 13, Robert Archibald had 11 while Jiri Welsch got 10 for Unicaja. David Bluthenthal had 19 points for Le Mans to lead all scorers. Dewarick Spencer added 14, Brian Chase got 13 while Joao Paulo Batista contributed 10 for the guests. Spencer and Batista shined in the first quarter to give Le Mans a 10-15 edge. Unicaja found its go-to guys in Ndong and Archibald to get a 38-33 halftime edge. Bluthenthal singlehandedly allowed Le Mans to get its last lead, 46-47, late in the third quarter. Le Mans got within 62-59 with 7 minutes remaining but three-pointers by Thomas Kelati, Carlos Cabezas and Haislip allowed Unicaja to seal the outcome to get a well-deserved win.

David Bluthenthal - Le Mans Bluthenthal was first to score for Le Mans but Haislip quickly answered a three-pointer on a two-on-two situation with Kelati. Spencer and Haislip traded bombs from downtown for a 6-5 Unicaja edge. Cabezas shined with his trademark driving layup but Pape Badiane matched it with a five-meter jumper that Spencer followed with an off-balance layup, making Unicaja call timeout at 8-9. Carlos Jimenez stepped up with free throws but Bluthenthal buried an uncontested triple to beat Unicaja's full-court pressure while a three-point play by Batista gave Le Mans a five-point lead, 10-15. Ndong tried to change things with free throws that Spencer bettered with a layup-plus-foul. Ndong beat the guests' zone defense with a jumper, igniting a 7-0 run in which Joseph Gomis had 5 points, including a corner triple for a 19-18 Unicaja edge. Alain Koffi sank a jumper that Ndong matched with a put-back layup to fix a 21-20 score after 10 minutes.

Badiane had a huge block on Omar Cook that allowed Koffi to run the other way and finish the play with an alleyoop dunk. Welsch answered from downtown for a 24-22 Unicaja edge. Batista fed Chase for an easy basket that Vitor Faverani matched with a baseline jumper. Koffi kept pacing Le Mans with a big move in the low post but Ndong put Unicaja back ahead, 28-26. Batista dished an outstanding assist to Spencer and soon added a free throw to restore a 28-29 Le Mans edge. Cook downed a three-pointer but an unstoppable Batista tied it again at 31-31. Spencer and Archibald traded free throws, while Koffi provided yet another highlight with a dunk on Cabezas. Archibald kept pacing Unicaja with a tip-in that Haislip followed with foul shots. Le Mans kept struggling to score while an easy layup by Archibald kept the hosts ahead, 38-33, at halftime.

Jiri Welsch - Unicaja Archibald stayed on fire after the break with a two-handed put-back dunk and a steal that allowed Kelati to get a fast break layup. Bluthenthal took over with a driving layup and soon added a long two-pointers to bring Le Mans as close as 42-37. Unicaja had troubles to score while a red hot Bluthenthal sank a seven-meter bomb. Welsch stepped up with a layup that Archibald followed with a dunk off to give Unicaja some fresh air at 46-40. Badiane made free throws that Chase followed with a floating layup in a 0-7 run that Bluthenthal capped with a huge triple coming off a screen for a 46-47 Le Mans edge. Haislip shined with a high-flying driving layup while Welsch struck from downtown but Maleye Ndoye got Le Mans within 51-49. Ndong followed foul shots with a close jumper to restore a six-point Unicaja lead, 55-49. Diot stepped up with 4 quick points but Gomis scored for a 57-53 Unicaja edge after 30 minutes.

Jimenez had a power dunk right at the start of the fourth quarter but Badiane matched it with a put-back layup. Jimenez got the crowd involved with a layup-plus-foul to make it a seven-point game, 62-55. Ndoye rescued Le Mans with an easy basket while Spencer banked in a jumper for a 62-59 deficit. Ndong dunked it and Gomis sank free throws but Bluthenthal nailed a running jumper to keep Le Mans in the game. Kelati struck from downtown, as Le Mans called timeout at 69-61 with 6 minutes remaining. Batista and Welsch traded layups while Archibald gave Unicaja a double-digit lead, 73-63. Batista and Chase took over with back-to-back layups but Cabezas buried a key triple for a 76-67 Unicaja margin with 3 minutes to go. Le Mans was running out of time but Chase followed a three-pointer with a layup for a 76-72 score with 56 seconds remaining. Haislip sealed the outcome with a triple, as the guests could not overcome the deficit.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Euroleague.net
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Referees: ZAVLANOS, NIKOLAOS (GRE), ZIEMBLICKI, GRZEGORZ (POL), BOLTAUZER, MATEJ (SLO)
Attendance: 8200
By Quarter1234
Unicaja21171927
Le Mans20132026
End of Quarter1234
Unicaja21385784
Le Mans20335379
Unicaja
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
00 COOK, OMAR 18:35 6 0/2 1/2 3/4       4   1   1 4 2 2
4 GOMIS, JOSEPH 16:15 9 1/2 1/2 4/4       1 1 1       3 11
8 CORTABERRIA, JON DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
9 WELSCH, JIRI 18:18 10 2/2 2/2         2   2     4 1 7
10 CABEZAS, CARLOS 23:24 5 1/3 1/3   1   1 3 1 4   1   1 2
12 NDONG, BONIFACE 17:44 14 4/9   6/6 3 3 6   1       1 4 19
15 FAVERANI, VITOR 6:30 2 1/2     1 3 4     2         3
20 JIMENEZ, CARLOS 25:46 9 2/2 0/2 5/5   5 5 1 1 1 1   3 6 17
21 ARCHIBALD, ROBERT 18:29 11 5/5   1/2 3 3 6 1   4 2   5 3 13
23 KELATI, THOMAS 27:30 5 1/4 1/5     1 1 3 1 2   1 1   -1
24 HAISLIP, MARCUS 27:29 13 1/4 3/6 2/2 1 6 7 2   2     1 3 16
Team           4 2 6     1         5
Totals 200:00 84 18/35 9/22 21/23 13 23 36 17 5 20 3 3 19 23 94
        51.4% 40.9% 91.3%
Head coach: GARCIA RENESES, AITO
Min: Minutes played; Pts: Points; 2FG M-A: 2-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); 3FG M-A: 3-point Field Goals (Made-Attempted); FT M-A: Free Throws (Made-Attempted); Rebounds: O (Offensive), D (Defensive), T (Total); As: Assists; St: Steals; To: Turnovers; Bl: Blocks (Fv: In Favor / Ag: Against); Fouls: Cm (Commited), Rv (Received); PIR: Performance Index Rating
Le Mans
  Rebounds Blocks Fouls
# Player Min Pts 2FG 3FG FT O D T As St To Fv Ag Cm Rv PIR
5 CHASE, BRIAN 29:59 15 4/7 1/3 4/4 2 1 3 2 1 2   1 3 2 12
6 SPENCER, DEWARICK 37:02 14 4/7 1/6 3/5   4 4 3 2 2   1 3 3 10
7 KOFFI, ALAIN 24:25 6 3/7   0/2 4 4 8 3     1   5 2 9
8 DIOT, ANTOINE 17:30 4 1/4   2/2 1 3 4 1   1     1 2 6
9 NDOYE, MALEYE 19:05 7 2/4 1/3     1 1 1 2 1     2   4
10 LELOUP, JEREMY 1:56                   1     1   -2
11 BATISTA, J.P. 23:11 10 4/6   2/3 2 1 3 3 1 3   1 3 6 13
12 BADIANE, PAPE 13:05 6 2/3   2/2 1   1     1 2   2 1 6
13 BLU, DAVID 33:47 17 4/7 3/7   1 1 2     3     3 3 9
19 TSONGA, ENZO DNP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Team             2 2   1           3
Totals 200:00 79 24/45 6/19 13/18 11 17 28 13 7 14 3 3 23 19 70
        53.3% 31.6% 72.2%
Head coach: JACKSON, JD

Head Coaches

GARCIA RENESES, AITO
Unicaja
"Everyone takes from granted that we will beat like Le Mans, which means that our mentality may be that everything will be easier and the win will come without a lot of effort. This is when you have to be even more focused and give over 90% in a game like this, not go down to 50%. Even with that, beating a well-organized team is always a good result. The players' rotation does not depend on the game being under control or not, but on tactic issues or seeing that a player is not giving its maximum so that he can give it again. I don't want anyone to get me wrong, though, because my players put a good effort out there tonight. We lacked concentration at times and we have to limit that if we want to incrase our playing level. I liked Le Mans tonight, especially its strong frontcourt."
JACKSON, JD
Le Mans
"It is a shame to lose a game like this. We were a bit nervous in the first half but were physically strong all game long. We have good scorers who missed key shots in critical moments. Unicaja got an important lead with a late three-pointer by Carlos Cabezas that allowed them to seal the outcome. We are happy with the good work we did, even when we are a bit sad with the final score. Now we must think about our home game against Cibona and try to beat Unicaja when we face them again."

Players

CABEZAS, CARLOS
Unicaja
"We did not play our best basketball but managed to win the game, which was the most important game. It was our first Euroleague game of the season and Le Mans has changed a lot compared to last year. They have a good team and I sure they will upset some teams out there."
JIMENEZ, CARLOS
Unicaja
"Maybe we did not go out there with the intensity required to have a Euroleague game. They started the game with more intensity but we managed to get a slim lead in the final minutes. We managed to put a little bit of extra pressure to win the game."
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